The Indian Land Lady Warrior Tennis Team fell 4-3 to the Lady Vikings of Emerald High (Greenwood) in a second round playoff match for the SCHSL AA championship.
The contest was decided by the result of the #1 doubles match.
“We did well just to force the doubles match to be a decider,: Coach Doug Young said. “We’ve never been to a match where it meant so much – to force a team of Emerald’s quality to wait out the last doubles match is a victory in itself.”
Coach Young pointed out that the top four players from Emerald play tournament tennis, while only the #1 player from Indian Land, Hannah Shoemaker, plays at that level.
Shoemaker will compete in the State Singles Tournament in Lexington Nov. 12 -13.
“I was especially proud that our #2 doubles team could pull out their win; they’ve come a long way this year,” Coach Young said.
Emerald High is the reigning three-time Upper State champions in AA division ladies’ tennis. The Vikings came into the match having lost only 3 of 15 matches played during the season.
Indian Land finished its season 7 – 6, after having been in the playoffs for the first time in the team’s history.
The match was a tense affair, Coach Young said. Emerald’s depth was shown by the early results posted by Maggie Elliott and Rebecca Hobbs. But the other matches were seesaw battles.
After Michelle Rambo finished her match against IL’s Alexandra Greenawalt with a win, Shoemaker, Julia Greiner and the Bridget Sampson/Kelly Pauls team all had to pull out wins to keep the match alive.
Sampson and Pauls sealed theirs first, winning the match tie-breaker going away. Then Shoemaker finished off her opponent in a match tiebreaker, winning seven straight points. The last result came from Greiner, who battled back and forth with Arielle Barraca before nailing a forehand winner to take the match tiebreaker.
“Sadly for us, it appeared that Shoemaker and Greiner’s effort to win their singles matches took something out of both of them,” Coach Young said.. “The #1 doubles match was controlled by the Emerald team. Shoemaker and Greiner were never able to get their feet under them.”
Emerald plays Gilbert High for the Upper State Championship on Thursday at Gilbert High.